LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — An organized effort to get police out of schools is launching this week in Nevada and three other states.
Among the demands: End funding for school police and end the use of pepper spray.
A “national week of action” in Nevada, New York, New Jersey and Oregon surrounds the Tuesday release of a report: “Arrested Learning: A survey of youth experiences of police and security at school.”
The Center for Popular Democracy will release data from a national survey of over 600 students.
The report is expected to address students’ experiences, interactions and feelings about police and security in schools — and the perception that police create a safe environment.
Make the Road Nevada is a local group involved in organizing some of the week’s events in Clark County.
“To have police officers at school is a reminder that we must be on guard. Whenever I walk by an officer I hold my breath, take my hands out of my pocket, and try to stand up straight. I’m scared. Now I know half of the young people in our district probably feel the same way. We need police free schools,” said Desiree Reyes, a youth member of Make the Road Nevada.
“Not only that, the police are regularly pepper spraying young people —an act that would be considered a war crime in other circumstances,” Reyes said.
Organizers from the Urban Youth Collaborative, Make the Road Nevada and Latinos Unidos Siempre will host a youth-led launch day as the report is released on Tuesday, via a livestreaming event.
Organizers offered this link to register to see the event.
Make the Road Nevada has planned a rally outside the Clark County School District Administrative Building, 5100 W. Sahara Ave, on Wednesday from 2:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. Organizers are expected to call for the end to all pepper spray use on students, as well as police-free school campuses.
The week “to demand that federal, state and local elected officials take immediate action to remove police from schools and end the school-to-prison-and deportation pipeline” comes as CCSD students and teachers resume in-person learning for all grades on a limited basis.
Organizers are demanding that federal, state and local elected officials deeply invest in education and end funding for school policing, surveillance, and militarization. They will also demand that Congress re-introduces and passes the Counseling Not Criminalization in Schools Act, among other critical policy changes and budgetary investments.
Events planned for Thursday are in New York and Oregon.